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Joe Marler and Simon McIntyre Disciplinary Hearing Decisions

The Harlequins player, Joe Marler, has been suspended for two weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in London today (Wednesday, 27 April).

Joe Marler suspended for two weeks

Marler was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Iain Goodall (Scotland), for allegedly kicking the Grenoble hooker, Arnaud Heguy, in the 26th minute of the European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final at the Twickenham Stoop in contravention of Law 10.4 (c).

Law 10.4 (c) Kicking an opponent
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (c), carries the following sanction entry points – Low End: 4 weeks; Mid-Range: 8 weeks; Top End: 12 to 52 weeks

A Disciplinary Committee consisting of Roger Morris (Wales), Chairman, Simon Thomas (Wales) and Kathrine Mackie (Scotland) heard evidence and submissions from Marler, who accepted that he had committed an act of foul play but who did not accept that the foul play warranted a red card, and from Richard Smith QC on behalf of Marler.

The Committee also heard evidence and submissions from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.

In upholding the citing complaint, the Committee found that Marler had committed an act of foul play that warranted a red card. It determined that the offence was at the low end of World Rugby's sanctions and selected four weeks as the appropriate entry point.

In deciding to disregard the player's recent suspension as it was of an entirely different nature, the Committee then reduced the sanction by two weeks – 50% of the entry point – before imposing a suspension of two weeks.

Marler is free to play on Monday, 9 May. Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.

Simon McIntyre suspended for two weeks

The Wasps player, Simon McIntyre, has been suspended for two weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in London today (Wednesday, 27 April).

McIntyre was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Stefano Marrama (Italy), for allegedly kicking the Saracens second row, Maro Itoje (No 4), in the 69th minute of the European Rugby Champions Cup semi-final at the Madejski Stadium in contravention of Law 10.4 (c).

Law 10.4 (c) Kicking an opponent
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (c), carries the following sanction entry points – Low End: 4 weeks; Mid-Range: 8 weeks; Top End: 12 to 52 weeks

A Disciplinary Committee consisting of Pat Barriscale (Ireland), Chairman, Roger Morris (Wales) and Julien Berenger (France), heard evidence and submissions from McIntyre, who accepted that he had committed an act of foul play that warranted a red card. The Committee also heard evidence and submissions from Kevin Harman, the Wasps Team Manager, and from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.

In upholding the citing complaint, the Committee determined that the offence was at the low end of World Rugby's sanctions and selected four weeks as the appropriate entry point.

The Committee then reduced the sanction by two weeks – 50% of the entry point – due to McIntyre's timely apology to Itoje, his clean disciplinary record, good character and good conduct at the hearing, before imposing a suspension of two weeks.

McIntyre is free to play on Monday, 9 May. Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.

Notes

(i) Citing Commissioner
a) Citing Commissioners are appointed by EPCR for all European Rugby Champions Cup and all televised Challenge Cup matches and shall be entitled to cite a player for any act or acts of Foul Play that in the Citing Commissioner's opinion warranted a red card.
b) For such matches, clubs will not have the power to cite a player but may refer incidents to the Citing Commissioner within 26 hours of the start of the match.
c) The Citing Commissioner will have 50 hours from the start of the match to make a citing. In certain circumstances this deadline can be extended.
d) The tournament Disciplinary Officer may forward the submitted citing to a Citing Officer to determine whether there are sufficient grounds for the citing to progress.
e) The Disciplinary Officer will then bring a charge against the cited player.
(ii) Disciplinary Hearing
a) A Disciplinary Committee is chosen by the chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel, Professor Lorne Crerar.
b) The tournament Disciplinary Officer presents the case against the player.
c) If a citing complaint is upheld, the Disciplinary Committee will be required to consider the appropriate sanction. Under World Rugby's sanctioning regime, which EPCR is obliged to follow, the Disciplinary Committee will first assess the seriousness of the player's actions and determine which of the three stipulated entry points (lower end, mid range and top end) is the most appropriate.
d) The Disciplinary Committee will determine the appropriate entry point based on an assessment of a number of particular characteristics of the player's actions, including whether or not they were intentional, whether or not they caused any injuries and whether or not they had any effect on the relevant match.
e) After deciding the entry point, the Disciplinary Committee will then consider whether the suspension should be increased from the entry point to take account of certain specified aggravating factors, such as a poor disciplinary record or the need for deterrence, and/or decreased from the entry point to take account of certain specified mitigating actions, such as a guilty plea, a good disciplinary record, the player's conduct at the hearing and expressions of remorse.
f) A suspension is a blanket ban from playing rugby union anywhere in the world.
g) Both parties to the hearing (EPCR and the player) have the right to appeal decisions of the independent Disciplinary Hearing. Appeals must be lodged within three (3) working days of receiving the full written decision of the Judicial Officer.
h) The full written decision of the Disciplinary Committee will be available on www.epcrugby.com/discipline/decisions when the disciplinary process is complete
i) For World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, found at Appendix 1 to World Rugby Regulation 17, please go to www.worldrugby.org
 

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